- The Washington Times - Monday, September 10, 2001

The U.S. male population grew slightly faster than the female population in the 1990s, narrowing the gap between the number of men and women in this country, according to a new Census Bureau analysis released today.
A census brief titled "Gender 2000" shows that the number of males rose at a rate of 13.9 percent in the last decade, compared with 12.5 percent for females.
It identifies only three states — Alaska, California and Hawaii — where the growth rate for females outstripped that for males.
The report put the total number of males living in the United States in 2000 at 138.1 million and the total number of females at 143.4 million. The difference between the female and male populations fell from 6.2 million in 1990 to 5.3 million last year, the Census Bureau said.
Although females accounted for 51.3 percent of the nation's population in the 1990 census, their share slipped to 50.9 percent in the 2000 count. As a result of this change, the male-female ratio (a figure derived by multiplying the number of males by 100 and then dividing by the number of females) rose from 95.1 percent in 1990 to 96.3 percent in 2000.
What was particularly noteworthy was that the greatest gains in the ratio of males to females occurred among the elderly population. This indicates that men — who have long trailed women in life expectancy — are starting to live longer.
"The greatest increase in the male-female ratio between 1990 and 2000 was in the age group 75 to 84, where it increased from 59.9 to 65.2," said Renee Spraggins, co-author of "Gender 2000."
While such precise data are new, The Washington Times published a report in May that quoted Census Bureau spokesman Campbell Gibson as saying: "During the 1990s, there was more improvement in mortality among U.S. males than females."
Immigration and falling death rates were both factors in the increased male population figures in 2000. Demographers noted that male immigrants tend to arrive in this country first and to settle into homes and jobs before other family members join them.
The "Gender 2000" brief provides male-female ratio fluctuations for every decade since 1900. From 1900 to 1940, the male-female ratio was above 100. But it was below 100 by the middle of the century. By then, the number of women dying in childbirth had dropped sharply and the number of men smoking and suffering fatal heart attacks had risen. Between 1980 and 2000, the male-female ratio gradually increased.
The Washington Times previously reported that the 2000 census showed there were 1.8 million more males than females under age 18 living in the United States, even though boys are more likely to be victims of homicides, suicides and automobile accidents. Population specialists say the big surplus in young males has been evident for years and largely reflects the fact that 5 percent more boys than girls are born every year.
In other highlights, the "Gender 2000" census brief pinpointed jurisdictions having the highest and lowest male-female ratios:
States with the highest male-female ratios were all in the West. Alaska led all other states with a male-female ratio of 107.0. It was followed by Nevada (103.9); Colorado (101.4); Wyoming (101.2); Hawaii (101.0); Idaho (101.0); and Utah (100.4).
The lowest male-female ratios were recorded in the District of Columbia, identified by the Census Bureau as a "state equivalent," at 89.0; Rhode Island (92.5) had the second lowest and Massachusetts (93.0) was third.
Of 245 places with populations of 100,000 or above, the male population exceeded the female population in 44 of them.
The highest male-female ratios in places with 100,000 or more people were in Salinas, Calif., (113.7) and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., (110.0).
Gary, Ind., had the lowest male-female ratio (84.6) among locations with populations of 100,000 or more. It was followed by Birmingham, Ala., (85.7), Philadelphia (86.8), and Jackson, Miss., (86.9).
Of the nation's 10 largest cities, the male population surpassed the female population in Phoenix, San Diego and Dallas.

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